Profits and pandemics: prevention of harmful effects of tobacco, alcohol, and ultra-processed food and drink industries

The 2011 UN high-level meeting on non-communicable diseases (NCDs) called for multisectoral action including with the private sector and industry. However, through the sale and promotion of tobacco, alcohol, and ultra-processed food and drink (unhealthy commodities), transnational corporations are major drivers of global epidemics of NCDs. In a new article in Lancet, investigators from the The Lancet NCD Action Group examine what role these industries have in NCD prevention and control. They emphasize the rise in sales of these unhealthy commodities in low-income and middle-income countries, and consider the common strategies that the transnational corporations use to undermine NCD prevention and control.